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Publication numberUS20070074503 A1
Publication typeApplication
Application numberUS 10/583,737
PCT numberPCT/EP2004/012843
Publication dateApr 5, 2007
Filing dateNov 12, 2004
Priority dateDec 20, 2003
Also published asDE10360072A1, EP1697625A1, EP1697625B1, US7788904, WO2005064139A1
Publication number10583737, 583737, PCT/2004/12843, PCT/EP/2004/012843, PCT/EP/2004/12843, PCT/EP/4/012843, PCT/EP/4/12843, PCT/EP2004/012843, PCT/EP2004/12843, PCT/EP2004012843, PCT/EP200412843, PCT/EP4/012843, PCT/EP4/12843, PCT/EP4012843, PCT/EP412843, US 2007/0074503 A1, US 2007/074503 A1, US 20070074503 A1, US 20070074503A1, US 2007074503 A1, US 2007074503A1, US-A1-20070074503, US-A1-2007074503, US2007/0074503A1, US2007/074503A1, US20070074503 A1, US20070074503A1, US2007074503 A1, US2007074503A1
InventorsBodo Odendall
Original AssigneeBodo Odendall
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Exhaust system for an internal combustion engine on a vehicle, in particular a motor vehicle
US 20070074503 A1
Abstract
The invention relates to an exhaust system for an internal combustion engine on a vehicle, comprising an exhaust catalyst and a probe arrangement in the region of the exhaust catalyst as component of a lambda regulation device in which the engine is alternately switched between a lean and rich operating region, depending on the probe signals recorded by the probe device. According to the invention, the probe arrangement is embodied as a single, lambda probe, continuously providing probe signals, arranged downstream of the exhaust catalyst, by means of which, in cooperation with the lambda regulation device, the increase of the oxygen content in the exhaust gas flow over the whole duration of the lean operation phase and the decrease in oxygen content in the exhaust gas flow over the whole duration of the rich operation phase are each recorded in relation to an oxygen content comparison value (U0), whereby in both the lean operation phase and the rich operation phase a switching threshold value (U1, U2; U1′, U2′) dependent on oxygen content is given, which, on reaching said value, the lambda regulation device is switched into the other operating region.
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Claims(10)
1. An exhaust system for an internal combustion engine on a vehicle, having an exhaust catalytic converter and having a probe assembly in the area of the exhaust catalytic converter as a component of a lambda control device by means of which the internal combustion engine may be switched alternately between a lean-fuel operating range, in which the internal combustion engine is operated with a lean mixture having excess air and thus excess oxygen and a rich-fuel operating range, in which the internal combustion engine is operated with an air deficiency and thus oxygen deficiency, as a function of the probe signals detected by means of the probe assembly,
wherein
the probe assembly is in the form of a single lambda probe delivering a constant probe signal, such lambda probe being mounted downstream from the exhaust catalytic converter and by means of which, in conjunction with the lambda control device, the increase in the amount of oxygen in the exhaust gas flow is determined and over the entire period of the lean-fuel operating phase and the decrease in the amount of oxygen in the exhaust gas flow is determined over the entire period of the rich-fuel operating phase, in relation to a specified oxygen amount reference value (U0), an oxygen-dependent threshold switching value (U1, U2; U1′, U2′) being specified which, when reached, causes switching of the lambda control device to the respective other area of operation.
2. The exhaust gas system as specified in claim 1, wherein the threshold switching value (U1, U2; U1′, U2′) is determined and/or adapted as a function of an oxygen storage capacity and/or a degree of conversion of one or more pollutant components.
3. The exhaust gas system as specified in claim 1, wherein the threshold switching value (U1, U2; U1′, U2′) is in the form of the gradients of increase or decrease in the oxygen of the exhaust downstream from the catalytic converter.
4. The exhaust gas system as specified in claim 1, wherein the threshold switching value is entered in a performance graph of an engine control device.
5. The exhaust gas system as specified in claim 1, wherein the oxygen amount reference value is in each instance in the form of the preceding threshold switching value (U1, U2; U1′, U2′).
6. A method of controlling an exhaust gas system of an internal combustion engine of a motor vehicle, said method comprising the steps of:
detecting a constant probe signal with a single lambda probe, said lambda probe mounted downstream from the catalytic converter;
determining:
any increase in an amount of oxygen in the exhaust gas flow over the entire period of the lean-fuel operating phase and/or
any decrease in the amount of oxygen in the exhaust gas flow is determined over the entire period of the rich-fuel operating phase; and
switching the internal combustion engine from a lean-fuel operating range to a rich-fuel operating range or from a rich-fuel operating range to a lean-fuel operating range, when a specified oxygen amount reference value (U0), an oxygen-dependent threshold switching value (U1, U2; U1′, U2′) is measured by said lambda probe.
7. The exhaust gas system as specified in claim 6, wherein the threshold switching value (U1, U2; U1′, U2′) is determined and/or adapted as a function of an oxygen storage capacity and/or a degree of conversion of one or more pollutant components.
8. The exhaust gas system as specified in claim 6, wherein the threshold switching value (U1, U2; U1′, U2′) is in the form of the gradients of increase or decrease in the oxygen of the exhaust downstream from the catalytic converter.
9. The exhaust gas system as specified in claim 6, wherein the threshold switching value is entered in a performance graph of an engine control device.
10. The exhaust gas system as specified in claim 6, wherein the oxygen amount reference value is in each instance in the form of the preceding threshold switching value (U1, U2; U1′, U2′).
Description

The invention relates to an exhaust system for a an internal combustion engine on a vehicle, in particular a motor vehicle, as specified in the preamble of claim 1.

A generic, universally known exhaust system for an internal combustion system of a motor vehicle has an exhaust catalytic converter and a probe assembly in the area of the exhaust catalytic converter as a component of a lambda control device. By means of the lambda control device the internal combustion engine, as a function of the probe signals detected by the probe assembly, may be switched alternately between a lean-fuel operating range, in which the internal combustion engine is operated with a lean mixture having excess air and thus excess oxygen and a rich-fuel operating range, in which the internal combustion engine is operated with an air deficiency and thus oxygen deficiency.

Specifically, a lambda pilot probe is mounted upstream from the exhaust catalytic converter and a lambda control probe downstream from the catalytic converter. The lambda pilot probe is a so-called constant lambda probe, which is used for lambda control upstream from the catalytic converter. It is capable of detecting a relatively wide lambda signal in the range of about 0.7 to about 2. The object of using the probe is to measure deviation of the lambda generated by the engine from the assigned lambda. The lambda control probe, which is a binary lambda probe, generally can detect the passage only when lambda=1, but with very high accuracy. Such high accuracy is required for equalization to precisely lambda=1. Appropriate wiring is required for both sensors; the required structural space must also be present for both sensors.

The object of the invention is to create an exhaust system for an internal combustion engine of a vehicle, a motor vehicle in particular, a system which may be produced by a simpler structural method with constant high operational reliability remaining the same.

This object is attained by means of the features specified in claim 1.

Claim 1 states that the probe assembly is in the form of a single lambda probe delivering a constant probe signal. The probe is mounted downstream from the exhaust catalytic converter. In conjunction with the lambda probe control device it determines over the entire length of the lean-fuel operating phase the increase in the amount of oxygen in the exhaust gas flow and over the entire length of the rich-fuel operating phase the decrease in the amount of oxygen in the exhaust gas flow in each instance in relation to a specified oxygen amount reference value. A threshold switching value dependent on the amount of oxygen is assigned in both the lean-fuel operating phase and the rich-fuel operating phase; when this value is reached, the lambda control device is switched to the respective other operating area.

It is especially advantageous that use may be made in such a configuration of a single constant lambda probe mounted downstream from the exhaust catalytic converter to regulate the operation of the internal combustion engine reliably by means of the lambda control device as a function of the oxygen balance proportional to the lambda signal, even in the absence of a control probe mounted upstream from the exhaust catalytic converter. The component cost may be advantageously reduced as a result.

In another especially preferred configuration, as specified in claim 2, the threshold switching value specified in claim 2 may also be determined and/or adapted as a function of an oxygen storage capacity of the exhaust catalytic converter and/or a degree of conversion of one or more pollutant components. The accuracy may be increased further by taking these values into account.

As an alternative, however, the “threshold switching value” specified in claim 3 may be in the form of gradients of increase in oxygen or decrease in oxygen of the exhaust downstream from the catalytic converter.

In addition, as specified in claim 4, provision is made such that the threshold switching value is plotted in a performance graph of the engine control device.

By special preference the oxygen amount reference value specified in claim 5 is in the form of the preceding threshold switching value. In principle, however, the oxygen amount reference value may also be a permanent specified value.

As a general rule, then, an exhaust system such as this as claimed for the invention provides a simple and reliable option for control of the operation of an internal combustion engine. The engine component construction cost is also lowered.

The invention will be described below with reference to a drawing, in which

FIG. 1 presents a diagram of the variation over time of the probe signal of the permanent lambda probe mounted downstream from the exhaust catalytic converter,

FIG. 2 a diagram corresponding to that of FIG. 1, one in which the pattern of variation in the oxygen balance upstream from the exhaust catalytic converter is shown by a broken line based on the measured constant lambda probe signal,

FIG. 3 a diagram of conversion of the pollutants CO and NO2 over time in accordance with the mode of operation in FIG. 1.

A constant probe signal measured by means of a single permanent lambda probe mounted downstream from an exhaust catalytic converter is presented as an example in FIG. 1 as a function of the oxygen balance and time. The times of switching between a lean-fuel operating range and a rich-fuel operating range as a function of the threshold switching values derived from the prescribed increase or decrease in the amount of oxygen may now be determined on the basis of this trace of the curve. For example, appropriate threshold switching values such as the threshold switching values U1 and U2 characterizing an upward or downward peak in the diagram may be specified in a diagram of an engine control device. The threshold switching values may, however, also be determined in the form of the gradients of increase and/or decrease in oxygen in the exhaust flow. If the increase in the amount of oxygen in the exhaust flow over the entire period of a first lean-fuel operation phase is now plotted against an initial oxygen amount reference value U0 from time t0 in conjunction with the curve shown in FIG. 1 by means of the single lambda probe in conjunction with the lambda control device, switching from the lean-fuel operation phase to the rich-fuel operation phase may be effected by the lambda control device when the specified switching value U1 is reached. This switching is illustrated by a broken line in the diagram in FIG. 2.

Accordingly, over the entire period of the rich-fuel operating phase following the lean-fuel operating phase the lambda probe may be employed in conjunction with the lambda probe device to determine the decrease in the amount of oxygen in the exhaust flow in relation to the threshold switching value U1 but also in relation to U0 until the switching value U2 determined as a function of the amount of oxygen reached in the rich-fuel operating phase, as a result of which switching to the lean-fuel operating range is effected again by the lambda control device. Consequently, the broken-line pattern of a signal upstream from the catalytic converter illustrated in FIG. 2 may be modeled exclusively on the basis of a constant oxygen signal measured upstream by means of a single lambda probe. In this way a probe, i.e., a so-called pilot probe, may be advantageously dispensed with upstream from the exhaust catalytic converter.

The connection to conversion of NO2 (thin line) and CO (bold line) is shown in FIG. 3. The conversion of NO2 decreases constantly after time t0 as starting point, this making it necessary to switch to rich-fuel operation at time t1. This rich-fuel operation is continued up to time t2 until the conversion of CO drops again. These conversion results, which may be derived from the downstream catalytic converter probe signal, may be used in evaluating and determining the threshold values for switching between the individual phases of operation, as a result of which the accuracy of the switching cycle may be substantially increased even further.

The threshold switching values U1 and U2 are situated here only by way of examples at the peak of the downstream catalytic converter probe signals. From the viewpoint both of time and amount of oxygen they may also occur in advance of the peak, for example, at U1 and U2, as is illustrated only in diagram form and by way of example in FIG. 1.

Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US8127537Feb 27, 2007Mar 6, 2012Johnson Matthey Public Limited CompanyExhaust system for a spark-ignited internal combustion engine
US8205437Aug 27, 2008Jun 26, 2012Johnson Matthey Public Limited CompanyOn board diagnostic system
Classifications
U.S. Classification60/285, 60/276
International ClassificationF01N3/00, F02D41/02, F02D41/14
Cooperative ClassificationF02D2200/0814, F02D41/1456, F02D41/0295
European ClassificationF02D41/14D3H4, F02D41/02C4F
Legal Events
DateCodeEventDescription
Jun 24, 2009ASAssignment
Owner name: AUDI AG, DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA
Free format text: ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST;ASSIGNOR:ODENDALL, BODO;REEL/FRAME:022869/0592
Effective date: 20060505
Feb 21, 2014FPAYFee payment
Year of fee payment: 4